Three documentaries, which were to be screened at the upcoming International Documentary and Short Film Festival of Kerala, have been denied censor exemption certificate by the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting. Films screened at the festival do not require a certificate from the Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC) but need a censor exemption certificate to be screened at the film festival, which will begin on June 16.The three films, which have been denied the censor exemption certificate, are based on Rohith Vemula, Kashmir unrest and the student agitation at Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU). The film festival is organised by the Kerala State Chalachithra Academy, a body under the state government’s Department of Cultural Affairs, according to The Indian Express.
The films which do not have permission to be screened at the festival are: ‘In the shade of Fallen Chinar’ (which is based on the unrest in Kashmir), ‘March, March, March ‘ (which is based on the student agitation at JNU) and ‘The Unbearable Being of Lightness’ (which is based on Dalit scholar Rohith Vemula’s suicide).
Kamal, chairman of Kerala State Chalachithra Academy, told IE that all films, apart from these three, have received clearance from the ministry. Kamal said ”All films with the exception to these three have received an exemption. These three films are based on socially relevant themes”. Kamal also said that these films were denied permission because of increasing intolerance in the country. Kamal said, ”Permission was denied because of rising intolerance in the nation. We have asked the Information and Broadcasting Ministry to review its decision and provide exemption to these films”.
Last year during the International Film Festival of Kerala, which was organised in Thiruvananthapuram, Kamal had faced the wrath of Sangh Parivar and police after a few delegates refused to stand up for the national anthem, according to an Indian Express report.